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VIKINGS' GREEN SAYS HIS TEAM'S IN HUNT.

Byline: Lee Shappell Arizona Republic

There is every reason for Dennis Green Dennis "Denny" Green (b. February 17, 1949 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania) is a former American football head coach. During his professional career, Green coached the Minnesota Vikings and Arizona Cardinals.  to see red, yet the embattled Minnesota Vikings
    The Minnesota Vikings are a professional American football team based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL).
     coach is maintaining an even keel through a rocky year. At least on the surface.

    Last summer, Green defended a lawsuit stemming from an extra-marital affair. Twin Cities talk shows spent the summer ripping his character.

    Then, several key Vikings offensive players suffered injuries, among them quarterback Warren Moon
    For the footballer (soccer), see Warren Moon (footballer).


    Harold Warren Moon (born November 18, 1956 in Los Angeles, California) is a former American and Canadian football quarterback who played for the Canadian Football League's Edmonton Eskimos
    , running back Robert Smith Robert Smith, Bob Smith or Bobby Smith may refer to:

    Business
    • Robert Barr Smith (1824–1915), Australian businessman and philanthropist
    • Robert H.
     and wide receiver Qadry Ismail Qadry Rahmadan Ismail, nicknamed the Missile, (born November 8, 1970 in Newark, New Jersey) is a former professional American football wide receiver in the NFL. Ismail grew up in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania and attended Elmer L. Meyers High School. . A team expected to contend for the NFC NFC
    abbr.
    National Football Conference
     Central title has lost six of its past eight games after a 4-0 start.

    And then, the Lou Holtz This article is about the American football coach; for other people named Lou Holtz, see Lou Holtz (disambiguation).
    Louis Leo Holtz (born on January 6, 1937 in Follansbee, West Virginia) is an author, television commentator, motivational speaker, and former NCAA football head
     rumors began flying.

    Holtz is a golfing buddy of Wheelock Whitney Wheelock Whitney is the name of three members of the Whitney family:
    • Wheelock "Wheels" Whitney (1894-1957) (businessman)
    • Wheelock "Whee" Whitney, Jr. (politician)
    • Wheelock Whitney III (historian)
    Sources:
    • Wheelock family genealogy
     and Jaye Dyer, who are on the Vikings' 10-member ownership board. Whitney and Dyer, who befriended Holtz while he was coach at the University of Minnesota (body, education) University of Minnesota - The home of Gopher.

    http://umn.edu/.

    Address: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.
    , took it upon themselves to ask Holtz what his availability is relative to the Vikings' head-coaching position.

    In the meantime Adv. 1. in the meantime - during the intervening time; "meanwhile I will not think about the problem"; "meantime he was attentive to his other interests"; "in the meantime the police were notified"
    meantime, meanwhile
    , Green is trying to hold it together and get his team into the playoffs.

    ``There's no doubt the distractions are difficult, and I didn't appreciate having some things written that probably had very little relevancy when we're trying to play football,'' said Green, whose team plays host to the Cardinals (6-6) today.

    ``I addressed it with the team when it first started. The most difficult time for us was two weeks ago. We were getting ready to play the Oakland Raiders

      This article is about an American football team. For other uses, see Raider.
      The Oakland Raiders are a professional American football team based in the city of Oakland, California.
       and there was a lot swirling around about Lou Holtz leaving Notre Dame Notre Dame IPA: [nɔtʁ dam] is French for Our Lady, referring to the Virgin Mary. In the United States of America, Notre Dame , which really didn't have any effect on Minnesota unless Lou Holtz was going to come and take my job. And that hasn't been the case.''

      Vikings President Roger Headrick, in charge of day-to-day operations, is the man who hires and fires coaches. He was not amused by the freelance work done by Whitney and Dyer, especially considering that Headrick is a supporter of Green. So is board Chairman John C. Skoglund, who is no fan of Holtz. It is not known how the other six owners feel. Each of the 10 owns 10 percent of the team.

      The board is scheduled to meet early in December in what no doubt will be a lively exchange.

      ``Anything that takes away from a football player's focus, or a coach's focus, is difficult,'' Green said. ``It's tough enough to win as it is. Look at our situation now. We're 6-6 like Arizona is, but we're both only one game behind Dallas and Philadelphia, and they've both been stumbling lately.

      ``I don't want us to be the only one of the four that has a bunch of things swirling around that have nothing to do with our ability to make the playoffs.''

      Holtz told Minneapolis reporters that ``there is absolutely no truth to the speculation I've talked to the Vikings, or that I have a desire to go to the Vikings, or that the Vikings want me.''

      But even Headrick acknowledges that it is likely that Whitney and Dyer acted on their own and talked to Holtz.

      ``You go through so many distractions, but that was one I really don't think we needed as players or coaches or as an organization,'' said Brad Johnson, who is expected to start at quarterback in place of Moon (ankle).

      ``Lou Holtz is a great coach, a legend for Notre Dame and college football, but Denny Green is our coach and the players are very loyal to him.''

      Green is under contract through 1998. He has guided the Vikings to two divisional titles and won 11, 9, 10 and eight games coming into this season.

      ``I don't worry about ownership,'' Green said. ``Right from the start when I got here, we had 10 owners, and no head coach wants to deal with 10 owners. That's a coach's nightmare. But you have one guy, Roger Headrick, to deal with, and then it is his obligation to deal with the other owners.''

      That said, Green turned his focus toward Arizona, which along with Carolina, is one of the hottest teams in the NFC.

      ``It doesn't matter if Green Bay is 9-3, or if Dallas is 7-5 if they're not playing well right now,'' Green said. ``You may have a good record, but if you're not playing good football when December rolls around, it doesn't take very much to drop out of the picture. I'm not pleased that we're 6-6. However, we're still in the hunt. Recognizing that gives you motivation.''
      COPYRIGHT 1996 Daily News
      No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
      Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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      Title Annotation:Sports
      Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
      Date:Dec 1, 1996
      Words:746
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